Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Snaps from STL

After work on Friday, I hopped in my car and made the two hour trip from Columbia to St. Louis to visit my sister, Hannah, who is spending her summer working as an admissions ambassador at Saint Louis University.

After a week interning (which I absolutely love!) it was a nice getaway. St. Louis really is a great city and it is so nice that it is close to Columbia. My sister lives in an apartment right off of SLU's campus, so she is super close to everything the city has to offer.

When I got in on Friday, we made dinner at her apartment, and then drove to get Ted Drewe's for dessert. If you're not familiar with STL, Ted Drewe's is a huge deal. It's a frozen custard place, and it's very old school. It sits along old Route 66 and has been a fixture for decades. It's an unmistakable place, with a neon sign, and a facade that looks like it is dripping with icicles.

After finding a parking spot (which was not easy, considering TD's was swarming with locals) we took our place in line. Despite the mass amount of people, the service was surprisingly quick. I ordered a micro strawberry and it was delicious. It tasted like summer!

We couldn't stop at just one dessert. Friday was National Donut Day, so we figured it was only appropriate that we indulge. We stopped at the Donut Drive-in, just down the street from Ted Drewe's. It was another very old school establishment, and although the shop is very small, the donuts were great. Hannah and I shared a glazed blueberry donut, but everything else looked great at well!

After enjoying our donuts, we drove back to Midtown and SLU's campus. My friend Amanda (who is also staying in Columbia this summer) happened to be in town visiting our friend Abby who lives in West County. (an STL suburb) They ended up coming over to my sister's apartment for an hour or so. It was so great to catch up! 

On Saturday, Hannah and I slept in, and then we started the day with a walk in Forest Park. I didn't know this, but Forest Park is the biggest residential park in the nation, and it is actually bigger than Central Park! It's a beautiful place, with running paths and bike paths, a golf course, playground equipment, and is home to several museums and the St. Louis Zoo. The houses that line the park are absolutely gorgeous. Hannah and I parked at Washington University and took a stroll for about an hour. The park was buzzing with cyclists, runners, and parents and children.

Beautiful home on Lindell, right across from the park

After our walk, we drove to Soulard, a neighborhood in the Southeast part of the city. It's best known for hosting the annual Mardi Gras parade. We enjoyed a delicious breakfast at the whimsical Soulard Coffee Garden on Geyer Avenue. I ordered Huevos Rancheros, which was stellar.

Huevos Rancheros at Soulard Coffee Garden

After breakfast, we walked a few blocks North to the Soulard Market. The Soulard Market is the oldest farmer's market west of the Mississippi. It's definitely a scene, with many stalls packed close together, vendors yelling their prices, and tons of people perusing the produce. The prices are great, and the produce looked very fresh. The market has a lot of character, and is also a great place for people watching. I suggest going on a Saturday morning to get the full experience. It might be crowded, but definitely worth it!

Produce at Soulard Market

Posing with one of the 250th Birthday cakes in Soulard (Also reaping Miz in STL)

We really lucked out, because the moment we got in our car to drive back to my sister's apartment, a monsoon overcame STL. We are talking pouring rain and insane wind. We hurried back and holed up in the apartment for most of the afternoon. I took a nap, while Hannah caught up on Scandal on Netflix. A very lazy Saturday afternoon it was!

By 4:00, the rain had mostly subsided, and even if it hadn't, it wasn't going to stop us from going to catch a matinee of The Fault in Our Stars. Hannah and I had both read the book, so I'm so glad we got to see the movie together. We bought tickets ahead of time to ensure our seats, and took in the show at the Chase Park Plaza Cinemas in the Central West End. 

There were definitely a lot of tears in the theater. I thought the movie was very well done, and I think Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort were perfect to portray Hazel and Gus. (Did I mention that Ansel Elgort is really attractive?!)

After the movie got out (and Hannah had fixed her running mascara) we walked around the corner to Maryland Avenue, where many of the restaurants and shops are located. The CWE is actually the cutest neighborhood. The houses are so charming, and there are so many amazing shops and restaurants. We decided to grab dinner at Bar Louie. It was great!

After dinner, we walked a street over to enjoy dessert at The Cup. I can't make a trip to St. Louis without a visit to The Cup. It is the cutest little cupcake shop. Their cupcakes are moist and delicious, and the buttercream frosting is to die for. I ordered my usual Gold Rush: yellow cake with chocolate buttercream. 

After our cupcake treat, I headed back to Columbia. It was a quick trip to St. Louis, but it was a nice little getaway and it was great to see my sister. I feel like a lot of people underestimate STL in comparison to other large cities, but it really does have a lot to offer!

Have you taken any weekend getaways this summer? What are your favorite places in STL?

Stay Stylish. Stay Classy. Be Creative.


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